14 Comments

Acceptable Use of Cult/Not Christian

Well, I thought my Carthage post was long dormant, but it has received a burst of activity lately.  One commenter has decided that it is acceptable to refer to Mormonism as a cult.  I find this HIGHLY objectionable, but he continues to derail the discussion over there.  So, I am going to create a new conversation about cult (and add whether it is acceptable to call Mormons “not Christian”), and move the irrelevant comments there to here.  I’d also like to have a conversation about whether the term cult is used as an emotional word, rather than a descriptive one.  I would also like to issue a poll, and find out whether readers of my blog find the word cult as objectionable when referring to Mormonism.  I’d like to keep the Carthage post on topic, and I will remove the comments there and paste them here.  I’ll post a summary of the most important comments relating to cult here, and we can discuss whether the word “cult” is a useful term in a religious discussion.

[poll id=28]

[poll id=29]

[poll id=19]

[poll id=20]

[poll id=21]

[poll id=22]

[poll id=23]

[poll id=24]

[poll id=25]

[poll id=26]

[poll id=27]

Now, here’s a recap of the discussion of cults.  I’ve removed references that were on topic, so that we can discuss the word cult here.

  1. Robert McKenzie
    September 17th, 2012 at 11:19 | #25
    Joseph Smith is supposed to be a profit of god, which I do not believe a profit of god would have a smuggled pistol or possibility injure or kill any one. Here you have this “Saint”, who supposedly is a profit of god was who had a warrant out for his arrest for violated someones freedom of press, who had someones buisness destroyed. It almost sounds like the moffia today. The guy is a nut case. The Mormon people base their religion on a 15 year old that was not happy in life and had an unwitnessed vision of god and had no physical proof of the gold tablets, other than a pocket full of dust in his pocket? That is scarey.
  2. Mormon Heretic
    {response about Carthage and note that Robert is biased in his opinion–original comment is still here, but not relevant to this discussion.}
  3. Robert McKenzie
    September 17th, 2012 at 11:56 | #27
    {relevant comment still available to Carthage discussion, but not relevent here}
    I have gone to many churches over the years, and this is the only one in our country that has had conflicts with people. I come from a huge Mormon Family. And if you are not Mormon, you are treated like garbage. This is why I started studying the Mormon religion. All other faith welcomed me in with no secrecy. JS sounded like a dangerous man to me. Another cult brainwashing people for there benefit.
  4. Mormon Heretic
    September 17th, 2012 at 12:11 | #28
    {comment still on Carthage post, but relevant point to this discussion is below}
    “the only religion to have had several major conflicts with people in different areas of the country”

    Really? Muslims aren’t persecuted today? The Branch Davidians lived peacefully? We don’t have any Sikh’s killed in Wisconsin?

    I’m really sorry your were treated poorly from your family. That is a shame. Go ahead and study Mormon history–I do. But don’t be so blatantly biased. Your accusations are ridiculous and show you’re using your family as an excuse to spread lies and distortions. Your family shouldn’t treat you badly, but quit spreading lies and distortions.

  5. Robert McKenzie
    September 17th, 2012 at 12:30 | #29
    {response about slavery still on Carthage post}
    And as for being treated poorly by my family, I was not. I never said they treated me poorly, I said they always thought they were better than me due to there religion, and that all other religions were a joke to them.  {rest of comment still there}
  6. Mormon Heretic
    September 17th, 2012 at 13:35 | #30
    {slavery comment still there}

    I said they always thought they were better than me due to there religion, and that all other religions were a joke to them. I been on the LDS website many times and this is where I get my information.

    Where does it say on the LDS website that “other religions were a joke to them”? I’ve never read that. This is another one of your distortions, and it is not helpful. Quit spreading distortions.

    Now, all religions believe their teachings are the best. If all religions said any religion was good, what is the incentive to join? I guess I’ll become a Hindu or a Muslim then, because it just doesn’t matter, right?

    When you make assertions that Mormonism is another “cult brainwashing people for there benefit”, you sound like a bigot. I don’t allow bigots here, so take your insults somewhere else. Such language is certainly unchristian, and you should have to apologize like Al Sharpton did a few years back for a similar quip, or Pastor Robert Jeffries did recently.

    If I am a liar, I got all of my information from the lds website, the joseph smith papers and watching the byu telivision. Don’t call me names it is not christian like.

    Well, I’ll quit calling you a liar when you quit calling my church a cult. Deal?

    {discussion of a false allegation about Joseph Smith}

  7. Robert McKenzie
    September 17th, 2012 at 15:36 | #31
    {more accusations irrelevant to current discussion about cults}
  8. Robert McKenzie
    September 17th, 2012 at 17:05 | #32
    {irrelevant to current discussion}
  9. Mormon Heretic
    September 17th, 2012 at 20:43 | #33
    Robert, (or should I be disrespectful and call you “Liar”?) If you can’t be respectful, leave. I’m still waiting anxiously for all your evidence.

    Free speech applies to the government, not blogs. If I came in your house and insulted you, then I can’t cry “free speech” and expect you to sit there and take it. (If I’m wrong, just give me your address and I’ll be happy to come to your house and insult you, all the while shouting “don’t take away my free speech!”)

    Get a life, show some respect, and show me some real evidence. Otherwise, take your attitude to ex-mormon.org where they enjoy insulting Mormons. It’s not welcome here.

  10. Robert McKenzie
    September 18th, 2012 at 09:17 | #34

    I have not one time disrespected you. How old are you anyway. I have gone up and rechecked all of my post to see how I have disrespected you in any way and I can not find one. I will be back any time I feel like it. I am not at your house, and if came to my house and said something about my church, I would have a conversation with you debating facts. I would not be insulted. If you came to my house and insulted me personally like calling me a liar, I would probably kick you out. And if you truly want my address, I will be glad to give it to you as long as I see you personally.

  11. September 18th, 2012 at 10:24 | #35
    Robert, the word cult is a pejorative term. It it’s used to demean. It is an insult. Nobody refers too the baptist cult our catholic cult our Muslim cult our buddhist cult our atheist cult, and that it’s a fact. If you refer to my church as a cult, I view that as an insult and will spam future comments. I have asked you several times to stop. If you refuse to respect that then I will kick you off my blog.
  12. September 18th, 2012 at 10:29 | #36

    I am happy too discuss facts, but you haven’t given any. If you can’t recognize an insult when it is plainly stated, you are not welcome on my blog. Get out. Of you can talk respectfully, then talk respectfully. Lose the intentional ‘brainwashed cult’ language. It is insulting and you know it.

  13. Robert McKenzie
    September 18th, 2012 at 12:24 | #37
    I only mentioned the word cult on your blog one time. The mormon religion is considered a religious cult like the unification church. I by no means insulted you personally like you did me by calling me a liar. No where in any of my responses did I insult you personally. I did not make up any of the thing I wrote on here. They all came from your religions websites. I will be glad to look up the information and post it on here where I found it on your churches websites. I am one of those people who read everything. I don’t just read between the lines. Again, I am extensively studying your religion I am seriously interested to find out the truths about the church or not. I have been to Mormon churches several times in my life with cousins and even sat in on Priesthood meetings, which in my opinion were a little creepy. again, this is only because of my experience. It will take some time, because I went over a lot of documents. I will be back to share those with you.
  14. Robert McKenzie
    September 18th, 2012 at 12:30 | #38
    Just to share with you the definition of the word cult: A system of religious beliefs and rituals. I still don’t believe this is an insult.
  15. Glenn Thigpen
    September 18th, 2012 at 15:11 | #39
    Robert, If you would take a bit of advice, it would really be helpful if you would provide some references for your allegations, such as Joseph killing some people before the LDS were chased out of Missouri.

    {discussion about slavery}

    If you wish to do some research on a particular subject and come back to us with it, we can engage in a respectful discussion on the merits of your data and do some research of our own.

    I assure you that MH is not a blind follower of the LDS faith and is willing to follow where the evidence leads. We have taken opposite positions on many issues that he has blogged about. He has allowed me to have my say and we have engaged in respectful dialogues on those issues. I am sure he will accord you the same diginity. He only asks that dissent is couched in respectful terms and that allegations are backed up with facts.

    Glenn

  16. September 18th, 2012 at 21:45 | #40
    Glenn, thanks for your comment. Robert, I can assure you that Glenn and I have disagreed on MANY topics. I welcome respectful disagreement. I urge you to review Chris Matthews interview of Pastor Jeffries. Let me quote from the article:

    Matthews said that the word “cult” would conjure up images of Charles Manson or Jonestown to most people. He said that Jeffress’ stated preference for a Christian over what he called a non-Christian was “just a prejudice…just the same old kind of tribalism that we used to have in Europe, that we tried to leave behind.”

    Note that Chris Matthews is no Mormon. When you refuse to apologize for your bigoted comment in 27, and instead defend the use of the word, all you’re doing is digging a bigger hole for yourself. You’re just as big of a bigot and Pastor Jeffries and Al Sharpton. I can’t believe anyone with any manners would resort to this. I’ve tried to be patient with you. I take offense if anyone calls a Unitarian, Muslim, Baptist, Catholic, Hindu, Sikh, Mormon, or Lutheran a cultist. It is used to demean; it is not meant as a compliment. Do you refer to Catholics as “Another cult brainwashing people for there benefit” as you said in comment 27? Was this meant as a compliment? (Please answer this, a simple yes or no will suffice.)

    {discuss allegations}

    Give me facts respectfully, and we’ll talk. I don’t want to spend another second talking about the word cult and whether it is meant to be a compliment when it is used. I sincerely doubt that you intended comment 27 as a compliment.

  17. September 18th, 2012 at 22:11 | #41
    {on topic comment about Carthage}
  18. Robert McKenzie
    September 19th, 2012 at 09:09 | #42
    There is a difference between a satanic cult and a religious cult, I was raised baptist ball my life, and I believe all religions are religious cults. Again look up the definition of the word cult. As for being a bigot. Maybe I should have re-worded my comment above, asking did the Mormons have a legal right to invite slaves to Missouri. I did not know if it was a free state or not. Instead of getting an intelligent response back, I was called a bigot. If Js had not killed any one period, I apologize for that comment. This person did not respond to anything but name calling. and that is not acceptable.
  19. Glenn Thigpen
    September 19th, 2012 at 09:30 | #43
    Robert, depending on the particular definition that one uses, just about any group of people could be called a cult. All religions pretty much do fall under one of the definitions.

    Here is another definition: “a group or sect bound together by veneration of the same thing, person, ideal, etc.” By that definition, political parties could be called cults. Just about any organization could be called a cult since organizations are founded for a particular purpose or ideal.

    The main point though, is what does it gain one to label an organization as a cult? The word has become pejorative to many organizations.

    As for MH’s response to your first post, please go back and read your first post and see if maybe you could have worded it better. Maybe see if you could have provided specific references for your allegations. It does not matter if an allegation is negative. What really matters is that proper documentation is provided in order that people on the receiving end may do some fact checking and hopefully engage in a respectful dialogue and exchange of ideas.

    Glenn

  20. Robert McKenzie
    September 19th, 2012 at 10:06 | #44
    {discuss Joseph’s death}
    Another answer to a comment of mine that was turned around for the person who likes to call names benefit, I said above that my Mormon Family thought all other religions were a joke, Not the LDS. I have at least 500 family members in AZ who are Mormons. Family has been in AZ for Many decades. Let me tell you, I was born in 1960, and lived in South Phoenix for a lot of my life. In the 60′s during segregation I lived among blacks, and Hispanics. A lot of these folks were my friends. I may not see eye to eye with my Mormon relatives, but they would be the first to tell you that I am not a bigot. From what I have read, it seems to me that wherever the Mormons went, they tried to change the area to adhere to their beliefs and rules. That is why I commented on, If they could invite blacks to live free in Missouri. Was it a Free state, instead I get someone calling me a bigot, when they don’t even know me? What a nice “Saint”. My church has always allowed blacks. Have you ever been to a Black Southern Baptist Church. You don’t know what you are missing. When my sister was married several years ago,in our church, one of the few Mormons who showed up collected all of the pamphlets in our foyer. We found out later she destroyed them. Is this christian like?
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14 comments on “Acceptable Use of Cult/Not Christian

  1. It is funny to me that almost 50 percent of the people think that the flds is a cult when they have the exact same belief that the Mormons have other than they still believe in having more than one wife. The Mormons in Utah Stopped plural marriages because they could not become a State and get federal benefits. The government told them they had to change or Utah could not become a state. Whats wrong guys. Did you delete my post so no one could read the truth. Did my post scare you?

  2. Why are you only leaving the post up that benefit you. What happened to the ones that say Joseph smith was a seer and a stone reader which the family practice old folk magic. If you want, I can look them up again on the LDS website and post them again.

  3. All of my post were relevant with this conversation. Just like the Mormons. Twisting the truth for there own benefit.

  4. Bob,

    I haven’t deleted anything. I try to keep conversations from drifting off topic. You have a shotgun approach to questions. I created a new post for you to ask any question. Please see that post titled Questions for Mormons.

    I thought you would like to see the poll results and that nobody uses your ridiculous definition of cult (which I felt deserved a post all it’s own). As for the flds, I actually agree with you, but you fail to recognize the LDS church had changed considerably since 1890. Nobody views the LDS church as extreme except for bigots.

    “Just like the Mormons. Twisting the truth for there own benefit.” cut the broad brush attacks. It makes you sound like a bigot and a jerk.

  5. I hope this applies to the conversation, and not simply my own interests, but we actually had a pretty in-depth conversation about the concept of Mormonism and Cults over at Mormon Expression/Mormon Expositor. I’ll post links at the bottom of my comment, but I really think the term “cult” is something that needs to be re-evaluated. I read a book by a sociologist recently about Mormonism where he mentioned that “The term Cult is thrown around by many evangelicals to define those that aren’t them.”

    I really found that interesting. I really wonder if the term “cult” is akin to us throwing around the term “racist.” It’s a loaded term, manipulated to get a certain reaction out of people. It seems to me 9/10 it’s not used as a sociological term, it’s used to degrade a certain people, and therefore, it can’t be used in the proper context, where ALL religious could be considered to be a cult based on sociological definitions.

    Anyways, here’s our discussion – If you want to delete the links, MH, I’ll put that power in your hands:

    Part 1: http://mormonexpression.com/2012/05/07/episode-201-cults/
    Part 2a: http://mormonexpositor.com/2a-is-mormonism-a-cult-the-fearsome-follow-up/
    Part 2b: http://mormonexpositor.com/2b-is-mormonism-a-cult-the-fearsome-follow-up/

  6. I agree Brandt, Cult is such a loaded term that it is really not useful in a religious conversation, and evangelicals are the only ones that continue to use it. Nobody refers to the sociological definition, or we would talk about the Baptist cult, Catholic cult, etc.

    My feeling is that Evangelicals also call Mormons not Christian in the same light. It is a ridiculous assertion. Of course Mormons believe in Jesus, that he died on the cross and was resurrected, etc. These ridiculous assertions are followed by “well you believe in a different Jesus.” Ok, well yeah. But the assertion of non-Christian implies we don’t believe in Christ. That’s just flat out false. If someone wants to say that Mormons don’t follow historical Christianity, then I agree. If someone wants to say Mormons have different beliefs (perhaps heretical beliefs) then fine. But don’t imply that I don’t believe in Christ (which is what the term non-Christian implies), because that’s just flat out false.

    Is Mormonism closer to Buddhism or Christianity? That should be a no-brainer, but the non-Christian label makes it sound like we are closer to Buddhism. It’s a ridiculous label, and is meant to de-legitimize Mormons. It’s a polemic attack, not a factual one.

  7. @Mh
    The one thing I have learned on this sight is that you love to call people names such as bigot and jerk. Again I have never once called you a name, which I am really impressed with you. and number 2 before I called someone a bigot and a jerk. I would at least try to answer all of there questions. Am I a jerk for saying that JS was a stone reader? As for being a bigot, I don’t agree with him for being a martyr. I have never called anyone a name, other than I don’t agree that JS was a prophet. How christian, I am impressed.

  8. I have never once behaved badly on this site. All questions I have asked were quotes from mormon sites. I am not going to re-ask my questions, because I have already asked them once with the quotes and where you could find the quote. Am I a jerk for this? Am I a bigot for this? Shame on you? Can you tell me where I have behaved badly? I think you have behaved badly for name calling. I don’t believe in name calling. Just because, I don’t believe that your church is a true christian church, it does not call for name calling. I will not lower myself to your standards. I encourage you to stop the name calling, and challenge you to prove that your church is worthy of being a true christian church. Again, everything I believe is my opinion. Am I not entitled to my opinion as an American citizen. Or do I have to suppress my opinion on your behalf. I almost feel like a slave to you for not being able to express my opinion without name calling. You might as well call me anything you want, because I refuse to stoop that low. Please answer the questions that I have already asked.

  9. Robert, I am not sure why you basically posted the same comment twice, but for the LAST TIME, I will address your ridiculous assertions. I will REPEAT it to make sure that I answer ALL your questions, so you don’t have to blame me for that again.

    I have never once called you a name,

    No, but you have called Mormonism a cult. As you can see from the poll results, currently 92% responded that a cult “is meant to show that the group is extreme or illegitimate somehow.” Only 1 person answer that “Yes it is a compliment” and 1 person said it was neutral. I assume that you were one of these 2 people. So Robert, your terminology of cult is offensive in the eyes of 92% of the people that answered the poll results. Take that into account when you unbelievably try to say that “I have never once called you a name”. Yes you did.

    I would at least try to answer all of there questions. Am I a jerk for saying that JS was a stone reader?

    Robert, I answered that question almost a week ago. Apparently you didn’t bother to read it. Let me make it easy for you. Click here for the answer. Before you make another stupid allegation, perhaps you should take time to read my answer. It may save you from embarrassing yourself.

    As for being a bigot, I don’t agree with him for being a martyr.

    This sentence really makes no sense. I didn’t call you a bigot because of your beliefs about Joseph or whether he was a martyr. You can believe anything you want to believe. I called you a bigot for what you said about Mormons, but apparently you still think that is not offensive. So, let me substitute the word “Jew” or “Judaism” for all the times I found your remarks offensive. Perhaps that will help you see that your remarks are offensive, because I assume that you would never make these bigoted remarks about Jews.

    1. [The Biblical prophet Joshua] is supposed to be a profit of god, which I do not believe a profit of god would have [destroyed the entire city of Jericho] or kill any one. Here you have this “Saint”, who supposedly is a profit of god was who [commit genocide and destroyed every man, woman, child, and animal in Jericho]. It almost sounds like the moffia today. The guy is a nut case. The [Jewish people base their religion on a 15 year old that was not happy in life and had an unwitnessed vision of god and had no physical proof of the [10 commandments], other than a [burning bush]? That is scarey.

    3. I have gone to many churches over the years, and this is the only one in our country that has had conflicts with people. I come from a huge [Jewish] Family. And if you are not [Jewish], you are treated like garbage. This is why I started studying the [Jewish] religion. All other faith welcomed me in with no secrecy. [Moses] sounded like a dangerous man to me. Another cult brainwashing people for there benefit.

    13. I only mentioned the word cult on your blog one time. The [Jewish] religion is considered a religious cult like the unification church. I by no means insulted you personally like you did me by calling me a liar. No where in any of my responses did I insult you personally.

    {here we go again, but it’s ok to call the Jewish religion a brainwashing cult. That isn’t antisemitism is it?}

    I did not make up any of the thing I wrote on here. They all came from your religions websites. I will be glad to look up the information and post it on here where I found it on your churches websites. I am one of those people who read everything. I don’t just read between the lines. Again, I am extensively studying your religion I am seriously interested to find out the truths about the church or not. I have been to [Jewish] churches several times in my life with cousins and even sat in on Priesthood meetings, which in my opinion were a little creepy. again, this is only because of my experience. It will take some time, because I went over a lot of documents. I will be back to share those with you.

    15. Just to share with you the definition of the word cult: A system of religious beliefs and rituals. I still don’t believe this is an insult.

    No, but 92% of the readers here do not believe it is a compliment or a neutral term. 92% believe is is meant to demean. I’d call that an insult.

    Now, that was just in the opening post. Let’s review the comments on this post that I find offensive (or at a minimum insensitive.)

    #3 Just like the [Jews]. Twisting the truth for there own benefit.

    Does this help you see that these specific remarks are bigot remarks? I know you didn’t say “Jew” or refer to “Joshua”, but can you see that similar comments would make Jews upset?

  10. Now to finish what your statements, so that I make sure I answered ALL your questions and stupid accusations.

    I have never called anyone a name,

    No, your said Mormons were a cult, and 92% of the readers here believe that is meant to show Mormons are extreme and illegitimate. Perhaps you should learn that this is an offensive term, despite your repeated denials. It is offensive, get over it. Welcome to the real world where people understand how to avoid offense.

    other than I don’t agree that JS was a prophet.

    Ok, fine. But don’t call him a nutcase, or like the mafia (not moffia). Would you say Jesus is a nutcase? Peter? Paul? Moses? Joshua? Ezekiel? Isaiah?

    I have never once behaved badly on this site.

    I think my previous comment shows this statement to be a false statement, and false on many comments.

    I am not going to re-ask my questions, because I have already asked them once with the quotes and where you could find the quote.

    Good, because I answered them almost a week ago. Please actually read my responses. I spent a lot of time, and it is completely obvious you didn’t bother to read a single response. Here is my first response (on whether I’ve been to a black church), my second response (on Joseph’s false charges and the seer stone), and my third response (on whether Joseph performed miracles), But it’s obvious you didn’t read them, even though they’ve been there almost a week! I guess you don’t read everything like you claim.

    Am I a jerk for this? Am I a bigot for this?

    No, you’re not a jerk for asking legitimate questions, and I have answered your legitimate questions. You’re a jerk for continually asserting Mormons are a brainwashed cult who believe in a nut case. That is offensive. Would you say the same thing about Jews and their belief in Moses? He killed an Egyptian (go check your bible). Is Joshua a nutcase for killing every man, woman, and child in Jericho? What say you?

    Shame on you? Can you tell me where I have behaved badly?

    Yes, read comment 9. Don’t ask me this question again. It is well documented several times in this specific post.

    I think you have behaved badly for name calling.

    Well, I’ll call you a nutcase since that isn’t considered an insult. Apparently you think it is a compliment.

    I don’t believe that your church is a true christian church, it does not call for name calling.

    I believe your Baptist church is a cult that is extreme, illegitimate, and full of nutcases that behave like the mafia. Does that sound complimentary to you?

    I will not lower myself to your standards.

    First cast the beam out of thine own eye, before you get the mote out of mine.

    I encourage you to stop the name calling, and challenge you to prove that your church is worthy of being a true christian church.

    Ditto for you. Quit the name calking and show me that baptists are a true Christian church.

    Please answer the questions that I have already asked.

    Please read the answers I have already written a week ago.

  11. Actually,I appreciate your enthusiasm for your religion, and if I offended you, I do apologize, but the sad thing is you really don’t know me. I grew up in a poor neighbor hood where mostly of black and Hispanic kids. I was the minority in my neighborhood. I hated, and I use that word very strongly, anyone who was prejudice, I feel strongly for the freedom of religion as well as speech and my opinion. By the time I was in high school, I was going to school full time, and working construction with my father who had become successful during my high school years. I worked in the construction industry 12 years before becoming a correctional officer for 8 years. During that time, I went to school to become a Emergency Medical Technician. Living in the small town that I lived in at the time, I was also a volunteer firefighter. I actually saved a partners life and was recognized by the community. I don’t have to prove to you any of this as you don’t have to prove to me the validity of your religion. In high school, my favorite subject was American history. I never know what to ask the missionaries when they come by, and the do about every shift change (6 months). I started reading the book of Mormons, one given to me by an aunt always with the book mark on the famous Moroni chapter 10 vs. 4. After reading this and visiting the lds.org, the Mormon Heretic, BYU TV, the Joseph Smith papers, and being raised for fort years around Mormon family, The history of Joseph Smith and the church became fascinating to me. I never have believed that he Mormon religion is a true religion, and I am sure I am not the only one. That how ever is my freedom to believe as it is for you, without being scrutinized. I never said you were a bad person for being a Mormon. I just asked questions on some things. I read on these sites. I don’t care what you say about my church, because my church is not responsible for my salvation. My relationship with god is personal. You can ask any correctional officer who is a Mormon, if being called names bothers them. It does not bother me being called a bigot or whatever else you want to call me. What bothers me is that you, representing your religion would call somebody names, no matter what they called you back. Being raised up to the 8th grade in the poor part of town, I grew up and was friends races over the years, and I can guarantee you, that not one of them ever considered me a bigot. Mormon relatives included. They respected my opinion and I respected theirs. Shame on you.

  12. Robert,

    After all that, I finally got a grudging apology (thanks) followed by another broad brush attack: “What bothers me is that you, representing your religion would call somebody names, no matter what they called you back.”

    Wow, you’ve upgraded me to official church spokesman now. I never claimed to be official church spokesman. Why do you paint everything so broadly? Do I say you are an official spokesman for the Baptist Church?

    What I find so interesting about you is the broad definition of cult you use (despite the fact that 92% of people here don’t agree with your broad definition), and your narrow definition of bigot. You seem to be perfectly happy calling everything a cult, but you want a narrow definition of bigot to only be defined as a racial characteristic. (Of course, the narrow definition of bigot makes you look better.) In your world, you don’t want to apply the label bigot to a religion. Let’s look at dictionary.com definitions of bigot:

    a person who is utterly intolerant of any differing creed, belief, or opinion.

    To be a bigot means that you hold negative views of a group despite evidence.

    a person who is intolerant of any ideas other than his or her own, esp on religion, politics, or race

    So, the real definition of bigot includes both race and religion. I’d say the shoe fits on you quite well. If you don’t want to be called a bigot, then quit making intolerant remarks. Shame on you. (But I am really happy for you that you have black and Mexican friends. Good for you. I bet you don’t say that “What bothers me is that you, representing [Mexicans or Blacks] would call somebody names, no matter what they called you back.” I’ll bet you aren’t that offensive to your Mexican or Black friends. Am I wrong?)

    I also find it interesting that you refuse to address my point about Joshua. If you read the bible, please tell me why God wanted to massacre the entire city of Jericho, including the children. (Or am I the only one who has to answer questions here?) And if God wanted Jericho’s children dead, why do you find fault with Joseph for defending himself with a 6-shooter against a mob of 200 with rifles?

  13. Why is it offensive to suggest that the LDS church is a cult? I am a currently disaffected, but formerly very active member of many, many years, and that’s how I see the church now. At the very least, it’s a moot issue, but certainly it can be discussed without anyone needing to be offended or be obtusely offending. You have to admit that the LDS church with its ‘sacred not secret’ apologetics with regard to the temple rituals, which would include the rites of the second anointing, is, to a fair, or at the very least, limited degree somewhat ‘cultish’.

    Hence, the secrecy, the ‘Strengthening the Members Committee’, the BYU Wilkinson days of students spies, and so much more is fairly meaty for the meal of rational discussion. When you examine the life of JS with regard to his secret polygamous and polyandrous ‘marriages’ and public denial — sorry, but ‘lies’, which brings up the issue of the countless missives and orations that speak of ‘lying for the Lord’, etc, if you can’t bring yourself to admit that, “Yeah, okay, well I suppose there is something somewhat cultish’ about the church, especially to non-members,” then you are either naïve, less than truthful, in denial, or…what (whew, that was long sentence)? There is nothing to be afraid of or offended about if someone refers to the church as a ‘cult’. You can disagree by calmly and intelligently putting forth your reasons for not doing so, but for heaven’s sake, don’t play the ‘I’m offended’ card — ‘You’re banned!). That’s just lame.

  14. MeFromCali,

    I moved your comment here where it makes more sense. I feel like I’ve already answered the question, so there’s nothing for me to add.

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